Homemade plaster is made with flour, salt and boiling water. Plaster of Paris is a pliable material that is widely used by craftspeople to create sculptures, molds and a vast assortment of individualized art projects.
To make plaster, approximately 1 1/2 cups of boiling water are salted and mixed with 4 cups of flour. The mixture is set aside until it is cool enough to handle, yet still warm to the touch. The plaster is then molded into the desired shape by hand or by using specially designed arts-and-crafts molds.
An alternate plaster of Paris recipe calls for glue and water. To make this version, two parts of diluted white glue are mixed with one part warm water.
Because plaster dries very quickly, craftspeople must ensure that all of the other necessary materials for the project are at hand. Individuals must only make enough plaster for the current project because once it cools completely, it is no longer malleable and cannot be used for its intended purpose.
Once a plaster arts-and-crafts project is complete, an acrylic top coat must be applied to maximize the longevity of the piece. Some plaster masks and art sculptures are enhanced with multiple topcoat colors.